Math Professor’s Own Learning High Priority
Written Fall 2006
Meeting new challenges has been the hallmark of Tony Barcellos’ academic and professional career. From his early days of teaching calculus at Consumes River College while working at the State Treasurer’s Office (his “day job”) to teaching full-time at American River College, Tony made his own learning a high priority.
American River College Mathematics Professor Anthony Barcellos is starting his 20th year in education. Meeting new challenges has been the hallmark of his academic and professional career. From his early days of teaching calculus at Consumes River College while working at the State Treasurer’s Office (his “day job”) to teaching full-time at American River College, Tony made his own learning a high priority.
“After many years as a mathematics professor with 30 colleagues, I always enjoyed the variety and change in a whole new group,” said Barcellos. “I had to do something to maintain variety. I was inspired to go back to school for a PhD with math emphasis.”
Tony credits Tom Sallee, UC Davis math professor and member of the Graduate Group in Education “for so much of my career.” Sallee was his dissertation chair.
Like many great teachers, Tony is a “voracious reader,” as well as an academic author who currently has a manuscript about calculus nearing publication.
One of his greatest professional pleasures comes from mentoring and “prodding” colleagues to apply for and enter their own doctoral programs. Two are now in the School’s Capital Area North Doctorate in Educational Leadership (CANDEL) program.
Tony will be teaching Quantitative Methods in Educational Research for the School of Education during winter quarter. . . . . We asked Tony what advice he would give to education students and educators about research and pursuing advanced degrees?
“When people enroll in grad school mid-career, it renews them. I specifically recommend the School of Education, because it appeals to different levels and points in life.
“One of the big strengths of the School’s doctoral program is the cross-disciplinary approach, taking the students ‘out of their niche’ with breadth and depth.
“It is really a consciousness-raising experience…why are you doing things and why are your students doing things? The research and experience has made me more reflective, more consciously aware of learning and pedagogical problems. I have a stronger base, and research enriches what I am doing with my students.
“If you are considering graduate school, you need to decide what you want to do to be best equipped. It is renewing in the middle of a career to enhance what you know, to share and learn and pour that into the context of what you are doing in your teaching.
“I have a great deal of credibility with colleagues, as a resource to them, and more to give that way.”
Awards: Fellowship with California State Senate, American Association for the Advancement of Science Mass Media Fellowship Program Award. Added (2014): American River College Patrons Club’s 2014 Faculty Chair